Jefferson County to consider opioid settlement allocation

Peninsula entities to receive allocations from state lawsuit

PORT TOWNSEND — Jefferson County commissioners will consider accepting an opioid litigation allocation agreement between the state and local governments that would provide $807,232 to the county for opioid abatement.

Commissioners will consider the agreement today after a public hearing on the matter is conducted following a 9:45 a.m. report from Dr. Allison Berry, health officer for Jefferson and Clallam counties, on COVID-19, Monkeypox and emergency management.

To view the meeting live, go to www.co.jefferson.wa.us and follow the links under “Quick Links: Videos of Meetings-Streaming Live.”

To join the meeting online, go to https://zoom.us/j/93777841705. To listen only, call 1-253-215-8782 and enter access code 937-7784-1705#.

The state Attorney General’s Office announced in May a resolution-in-principal for a $518 million settlement of the state’s lawsuit against McKesson Corporation, Cardinal Health, Inc. and Amerisource Bergen Corporation.

The AG said then that $476 million would be directed toward addressing the opioid epidemic.

The settlement was finalized in June.

The net settlement amount is $430 million, according to the Jefferson County agenda memo.

Half of that amount will go to local governments, less attorney’s fees.

The final allocation agreement was reached on Aug. 8, the memo said.

Jefferson County is getting 0.4 percent.

Clallam County and Port Angeles are each slated to receive a percentage of the settlement funds — Clallam, 1.31 percent and Port Angeles, 0.46 percent — for a countywide total of 1.77 percent.

The largest percentage went to cities and county government within King County, which is allocated a total of 26.05 percent.

Towns of 10,000 population or less are not eligible to receive funds, unless they had joined litigation.

Salish Behavioral Health is distributing the funds to Jefferson, Clallam and Kitsap counties.

The state has said that the allocation model uses three equally weighted factors: the amount of opioids shipped to the county; the number of opioid deaths that occurred in that county; and the number of people who suffer opioid use disorder in that county.

The agreement is set to go into effect after Sept. 23, which is the deadline for local entities to approve the participation form.

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